Available from Boydell and Brewer
Cupar (1715, '47), Fifeshire; Forfar (1722); Perth (1727); Dundee (1734), Forfarshire; St. Andrews (1741), Fife
Number of voters:
|6 Feb. 1715||PATRICK HALDANE|
|28 Apr. 1722||CHARLES LESLIE|
|Double return. ERSKINE declared elected, 27 Oct. 1722|
|9 Sept. 1727||JOHN DRUMMOND|
|25 May 1734||JOHN DRUMMOND|
|29 May 1741||JOHN DRUMMOND|
|20 Jan. 1743||THOMAS LESLIE, vice Drummond, deceased|
|22 July 1747||THOMAS LESLIE|
Perth Burghs, in three counties, were open and venal. The nearest approach to a territorial interest was that of the earls of Rothes, whose seat adjoined Cupar. All the Members were government supporters.
In 1715 Patrick Haldane, since 1705 a professor at St. Andrews, was returned unopposed. Elected provost of St. Andrews in 1716, allegedly by bribery and intimidation,1 he did not stand in 1722, when Charles Leslie, of the Rothes family and a member of the Squadrone, was opposed by William Erskine, an Argyll Whig, a professional soldier, whose family owned lands in Fifeshire. At the election meeting the Perth and Dundee delegates voted for Leslie; the Forfar delegate for Erskine; while the other two burghs sent rival delegates, including Leslie and Erskine’s brother in the case of Cupar, and Erskine himself in that of St. Andrews. The Forfar delegate, as praeses of the meeting, accepted the credentials of the two Erskines, thus giving a majority to Erskine, who was returned by the common clerk of Forfar, the presiding burgh; but the sheriff returned Leslie. On a double return the House of Commons awarded the seat to Erskine, referring Leslie’s petition to the elections committee, where it was shelved.2
At the next three general elections the seat was filled by John Drummond, a wealthy business man, who supported the Government. On his death in 1743 he was succeeded by Thomas Leslie, on the Rothes interest, who held the seat with government support till the accession of George III.